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Criticism

NB1100NB1100 Explorer
edited November 2016 in Buddhism Basics

Hello all,

It's said that Culapanthaka was a dullard because in previous existence he had made fun/ criticise (other translation) a bhikkhu who was very dull. But in life in general, sometimes we are praised or blamed or criticised. We may criticise (whether through speech or mind) other people, they can be monastic members or lay people.

I heard a monastic member said in the Dhamma talk, Culapanthaka became dull because he criticised a monk that has attained a degree of enlightenment, I assume four stages of enlightenment (Sotapanna, Sakadagami, Anagami and Arahat).

If, for example, one sees someone does something wrong, then his mind goes "it's not proper for him to speak and do such and such thing". And that person happened to be someone who has attained a level of enlightenment. Does this criticism make our kamma somehow weightier? Thanks.

Comments

  • personperson Where is my mind? 'Merica! Veteran

    I'm pretty confident saying no one here knows the answer to that in reality.

    The teachings do say that actions directed toward holier beings are weightier, just as actions towards humans are said to be weightier than those towards animals.

    If such ideas are causing you anxiety, I've often found that certain aspects of the teachings can be somewhat exaggerated when taken in isolation so they will be more effective at changing our behavior. Our thoughts and actions are almost always mixed so any potential effects probably wouldn't be as dire as a wholly unvirtuous one.

    karastiVastmindDhammaDragon
  • DhammaDragonDhammaDragon Carpe Diem Samsara Loop Veteran

    @NB1100 said:
    Hello all,
    If, for example, one sees someone does something wrong, then his mind goes "it's not proper for him to speak and do such and such thing". And that person happened to be someone who has attained a level of enlightenment. Does this criticism make our kamma somehow weightier?

    I can confidently say that I will sleep very well tonight, even if I don't come up with an answer to this question...

  • genkakugenkaku Northampton, Mass. U.S.A. Veteran

    The teachings do say that actions directed toward holier beings are weightier, just as actions towards humans are said to be weightier than those towards animals.

    @person -- Hold on a sec while I distinguish the holier from the less holy and the weightier from the less weighty. It may be difficult, and I imagine I'll have to apply my critical faculties, but I'll do my best to pretend that no criticism entered the picture. :)

    And when I get done with that I'll focus on not-thinking of a purple cow.

    lobsterCinorjerdhammachick
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    Are there really "holier" beings? I think about this sometime. The first time I met my teacher, I remember when he walked in the room and I felt like I was in the presence of someone that was somehow more special than the rest of us. I felt the same when I attended a HHDL gathering several years ago. But I've had similar feelings when being around people who just have the more magnetic type of personality, who you feel drawn to because they are so open and real.

    But aren't we all capable of that? What if we viewed everyone (or at least most people) with that kind of fascination?

  • CinorjerCinorjer Veteran
    edited November 2016

    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

  • @person said:
    I'm pretty confident saying no one here knows the answer to that in reality.

    The teachings do say that actions directed toward holier beings are weightier, just as actions towards humans are said to be weightier than those towards animals.

    If such ideas are causing you anxiety, I've often found that certain aspects of the teachings can be somewhat exaggerated when taken in isolation so they will be more effective at changing our behavior. Our thoughts and actions are almost always mixed so any potential effects probably wouldn't be as dire as a wholly unvirtuous one.

    Thanks for your reply.

    I assume no one wants to do unwholesome deed.
    We want to avoid unwholesome deed. When we see someone does or speak something improper to us, the mind goes "it's not proper for him to do such and such thing." How is this considered a mixed criticism?

    Since we are Buddhists, that kind of thought that is directed to noble ones has greater karmic effect, right? But we want to prevent this unwholesome deed.

  • @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    I agree with this. On my own account I will add, that monastics and teachers can (will) also suffer from wrong view, ill will etc. Thus aforementioned monastic member might just be protecting what he sees as the authority of the monastics. The Buddha said, that one should not criticize in others that which they have not attained themselves. Some equate this with karma which will reap bad results.
    So the monk has both canonical and maybe even personal reasons for saying what he did.
    We will never know exactly how, when or why karma works. At the moment I am pretty confident, that karma does not lead to arbitrary results - e.i. criticize a holy person and fail at playing tennis. The negative outcome of such a criticism could be, that a firm believer in the critisized holy person does his to avenge the percieved insult. An unwholesome action, of course, but we are humans afterall.
    I think it can be of value to take into consideration, that monks are just people who are in an environment which is seen as most conducive to reaching higher levels of understanding of Buddhism and maybe even reach levels of enlightenment, but it is up to the individual monk to take the steps. Being a monk is not necessarily the same as being a better person, which the actions of some monks clearly demonstrate.

    Cinorjer
  • @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    I agree with this. On my own account I will add, that monastics and teachers can (will) also suffer from wrong view, ill will etc. Thus aforementioned monastic member might just be protecting what he sees as the authority of the monastics. The Buddha said, that one should not criticize in others that which they have not attained themselves. Some equate this with karma which will reap bad results.
    So the monk has both canonical and maybe even personal reasons for saying what he did.
    We will never know exactly how, when or why karma works. At the moment I am pretty confident, that karma does not lead to arbitrary results - e.i. criticize a holy person and fail at playing tennis. The negative outcome of such a criticism could be, that a firm believer in the critisized holy person does his to avenge the percieved insult. An unwholesome action, of course, but we are humans afterall.
    I think it can be of value to take into consideration, that monks are just people who are in an environment which is seen as most conducive to reaching higher levels of understanding of Buddhism and maybe even reach levels of enlightenment, but it is up to the individual monk to take the steps. Being a monk is not necessarily the same as being a better person, which the actions of some monks clearly demonstrate.

    I agree but as mentioned above, the criticism does not necessarily have to be through speech. Once you see and/or received obvious improper treatment, the mind will go "he shouldn't do such thing" or the like. This is too a criticism, right? I'm just wondering if this kind of criticism will bring grave or heavy result, considering the person we criticize is a noble one. But telling ourselves not to think certain thoughts seems to be an impossible task. Do we have choice except stop interacting or going to holy place?

    Cinorjer
  • @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    On what basis we can confidently say insulting criticizing (in the mind) the teacher that probably has attained a level of enlightenment will not bring heavy result?

  • CinorjerCinorjer Veteran
    edited November 2016

    @NB1100 said:

    @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    On what basis we can confidently say insulting criticizing (in the mind) the teacher that probably has attained a level of enlightenment will not bring heavy result?

    I am just saying insulting a great revealed Master is no different from insulting the beggar on the street corner when it comes to Karma. It is the insult that brings karma, not who you are insulting. This is the Dharma that I was taught. Everyone has Buddha Nature. The dung in the field and the statues in the temple are inherently equal in value. Without the ground being fertilized you don't raise crops and then starve to death while bowing to that statue of Buddha. Equal value.

    My learning like all teachings sometimes disagrees with something said in the sutras, that's all. I see no difference between insulting an Arahant, a beggar, or a tree. It's the intent to harm through insult that does equal damage in all cases. But it's no biggie. Just don't insult people, no matter who they are. Easy. I openly admit there are places the sutras seem to say different. If that type of teaching bothers someone, they should not listen to me. Follow your own understanding.

    PJK
  • @NB1100 said:

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    I agree with this. On my own account I will add, that monastics and teachers can (will) also suffer from wrong view, ill will etc. Thus aforementioned monastic member might just be protecting what he sees as the authority of the monastics. The Buddha said, that one should not criticize in others that which they have not attained themselves. Some equate this with karma which will reap bad results.
    So the monk has both canonical and maybe even personal reasons for saying what he did.
    We will never know exactly how, when or why karma works. At the moment I am pretty confident, that karma does not lead to arbitrary results - e.i. criticize a holy person and fail at playing tennis. The negative outcome of such a criticism could be, that a firm believer in the critisized holy person does his to avenge the percieved insult. An unwholesome action, of course, but we are humans afterall.
    I think it can be of value to take into consideration, that monks are just people who are in an environment which is seen as most conducive to reaching higher levels of understanding of Buddhism and maybe even reach levels of enlightenment, but it is up to the individual monk to take the steps. Being a monk is not necessarily the same as being a better person, which the actions of some monks clearly demonstrate.

    I agree but as mentioned above, the criticism does not necessarily have to be through speech. Once you see and/or received obvious improper treatment, the mind will go "he shouldn't do such thing" or the like. This is too a criticism, right? I'm just wondering if this kind of criticism will bring grave or heavy result, considering the person we criticize is a noble one. But telling ourselves not to think certain thoughts seems to be an impossible task. Do we have choice except stop interacting or going to holy place?

    Unwholesome thoughts can lead or leads to unwholesome actions. That is the karmic effect of thoughts and - in my understanding - why thoughts should also be guarded and corrected. I do not buy into the esoteric stuff, where everything you do from stepping on an ant to thinking yours when someone is being a jackass (to put it bluntly), can be a deciding factor in a rebirth as a king or a beggar - literally or metaphorically so.

    The rule of karma says, that actions (including thoughts) have consequenses. Some are readily identifiable and immediate, others are difficult to see and can take long time to ripen - or might never. To think that this means, that any action (including thoughts) can have any consequence is not in line with the inherent logic of the rule of karma.
    If you have angry thoughts, you are more likely to act out - the angry (unwholesome) thoughts lead to unwholesome actions and thus a potentially bad karmic fruit.
    One angry thought will not do this, which is evident: we all have angry thoughts, and often enough at that, but we don't go around dodging falling trees, flying bullets and angry mobs all the time.
    Just like killing a fly will reap almost no negative karmic fruit, while killing a human being will reap a massive negative karmic fruit.
    An example: as a youngster I killed some rainworms. The other kids noticed and called me a "person cruel to animals" (one word in my language). My social status, and I, suffered because of the suffering I caused to the animals. Later I would suffer from a bad conscience, not sleeping at night. This eventually passed. That is karma in effect.
    A year later I was helping loading pigs unto a truck, when one of them turned suddenly and caused my thumb to sprain - some would explain this seemingly random accident with my killings of worms. Why, though? The rainworm killings had logical, obvious and explainable consequenses.
    So does the pig incident: I stressed pigs by guiding them into a truck. Pigs don't like to walk towards a dead end, so you have to gradually block the path with a wooden plate. Pig panics and runs into me. Bad karma, bad effect - but not necessarily obvious.

    What I'm really trying to say is, that you don't have to fear the reaper for even the most minor "transgressions". Karma is not a tombola.

    Cinorjer
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    We cannot entirely control the thoughts that come up. My understanding has been that while thoughts can lead to actions, it is the intent and action that brings about karma. Through meditation and continued practice, we can train the mind as far as thoughts, but most of that is a training of which thoughts we choose to attach to and which we let go of. We still cannot entirely control which thoughts happen to arise. If we are going to look at all the thoughts that arise spontaneously from the mind, the the least of my concerns karmically is criticizing so-called holy people or teachers. There are some crazy things that come up in my mind. Things I would be ashamed to ever tell anyone. But there is no intent behind them. There is no action. There is only dismissal of the thought as invalid for the direction I want to go.

    I personally don't believe (regardless of what teachings say) that thoughts alone create karma. When you follow your thoughts and give them validity and they create intent to harm (through speech or otherwise) then that is different. I might have a mean thought about someone who pulls out in front of me causing me to have to slam on the brakes and send my coffee flying. But at that point, i can choose to build on that mean thought and give the person the finger or confront them when they stop or ram their car. Or I can let it go. Or I can correct my thought and change that reaction the next time it happens. Until I choose what to do, IMO, that thought has no power, no intent and no karmic value.

    Cinorjer
  • Instead of worrying about how others have come to be with themselves and their problems, try to focus on what directly helps or hurt instead. At least that is something we can change or work on.

    Cinorjer
  • @karasti said:
    We cannot entirely control the thoughts that come up. My understanding has been that while thoughts can lead to actions, it is the intent and action that brings about karma. Through meditation and continued practice, we can train the mind as far as thoughts, but most of that is a training of which thoughts we choose to attach to and which we let go of. We still cannot entirely control which thoughts happen to arise. If we are going to look at all the thoughts that arise spontaneously from the mind, the the least of my concerns karmically is criticizing so-called holy people or teachers. There are some crazy things that come up in my mind. Things I would be ashamed to ever tell anyone. But there is no intent behind them. There is no action. There is only dismissal of the thought as invalid for the direction I want to go.

    I personally don't believe (regardless of what teachings say) that thoughts alone create karma. When you follow your thoughts and give them validity and they create intent to harm (through speech or otherwise) then that is different. I might have a mean thought about someone who pulls out in front of me causing me to have to slam on the brakes and send my coffee flying. But at that point, i can choose to build on that mean thought and give the person the finger or confront them when they stop or ram their car. Or I can let it go. Or I can correct my thought and change that reaction the next time it happens. Until I choose what to do, IMO, that thought has no power, no intent and no karmic value.

    Intention, AFAIK, is tricky thing. The gross intention is obvious, what we mostly call motivation or purpose of an action i.e. purpose of watching Tv, intention to ring a friend, etc. It is said that even lifting our feet when we walking will not happen if there is no intention. It starts with the thought. Full karmic consequences are sown when we, for example, after think to kill someone, plan to kill and the living being is killed.

    When we are treated improperly, our thought will think/say about something. We can let it go, but I think it depends on how badly we are being treated. Sometimes the thought can come up again in the future after the incident happened.

    In the Sutta it's often said the weight of the karmic consequences depends on the purity of the object. But can we find anything close to the karmic consequences of criticizing/complaining (in the mind) about someone that possibly has attained a level of enlightenment? Maybe it's close to the kamma of stealing?

  • NB1100NB1100 Explorer
    edited November 2016

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @NB1100 said:

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    I agree with this. On my own account I will add, that monastics and teachers can (will) also suffer from wrong view, ill will etc. Thus aforementioned monastic member might just be protecting what he sees as the authority of the monastics. The Buddha said, that one should not criticize in others that which they have not attained themselves. Some equate this with karma which will reap bad results.
    So the monk has both canonical and maybe even personal reasons for saying what he did.
    We will never know exactly how, when or why karma works. At the moment I am pretty confident, that karma does not lead to arbitrary results - e.i. criticize a holy person and fail at playing tennis. The negative outcome of such a criticism could be, that a firm believer in the critisized holy person does his to avenge the percieved insult. An unwholesome action, of course, but we are humans afterall.
    I think it can be of value to take into consideration, that monks are just people who are in an environment which is seen as most conducive to reaching higher levels of understanding of Buddhism and maybe even reach levels of enlightenment, but it is up to the individual monk to take the steps. Being a monk is not necessarily the same as being a better person, which the actions of some monks clearly demonstrate.

    I agree but as mentioned above, the criticism does not necessarily have to be through speech. Once you see and/or received obvious improper treatment, the mind will go "he shouldn't do such thing" or the like. This is too a criticism, right? I'm just wondering if this kind of criticism will bring grave or heavy result, considering the person we criticize is a noble one. But telling ourselves not to think certain thoughts seems to be an impossible task. Do we have choice except stop interacting or going to holy place?

    Unwholesome thoughts can lead or leads to unwholesome actions. That is the karmic effect of thoughts and - in my understanding - why thoughts should also be guarded and corrected. I do not buy into the esoteric stuff, where everything you do from stepping on an ant to thinking yours when someone is being a jackass (to put it bluntly), can be a deciding factor in a rebirth as a king or a beggar - literally or metaphorically so.

    The rule of karma says, that actions (including thoughts) have consequenses. Some are readily identifiable and immediate, others are difficult to see and can take long time to ripen - or might never. To think that this means, that any action (including thoughts) can have any consequence is not in line with the inherent logic of the rule of karma.
    If you have angry thoughts, you are more likely to act out - the angry (unwholesome) thoughts lead to unwholesome actions and thus a potentially bad karmic fruit.
    One angry thought will not do this, which is evident: we all have angry thoughts, and often enough at that, but we don't go around dodging falling trees, flying bullets and angry mobs all the time.
    Just like killing a fly will reap almost no negative karmic fruit, while killing a human being will reap a massive negative karmic fruit.
    An example: as a youngster I killed some rainworms. The other kids noticed and called me a "person cruel to animals" (one word in my language). My social status, and I, suffered because of the suffering I caused to the animals. Later I would suffer from a bad conscience, not sleeping at night. This eventually passed. That is karma in effect.
    A year later I was helping loading pigs unto a truck, when one of them turned suddenly and caused my thumb to sprain - some would explain this seemingly random accident with my killings of worms. Why, though? The rainworm killings had logical, obvious and explainable consequenses.
    So does the pig incident: I stressed pigs by guiding them into a truck. Pigs don't like to walk towards a dead end, so you have to gradually block the path with a wooden plate. Pig panics and runs into me. Bad karma, bad effect - but not necessarily obvious.

    What I'm really trying to say is, that you don't have to fear the reaper for even the most minor "transgressions". Karma is not a tombola.

    From my understanding, what you were saying was thought will not produce heavy karmic consequences. Reminds me of the dialogue between Buddha and Jain, Jain said only body action that can do (serious) harm not mind but Buddha said the opposite.
    I am not sure how to recall what is the name of the Sutta.

    Can we also say the effect of an action is obvious if it's done via body and speech but not the mind?

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    No matter how we are being treated, we can make different choices. Just because we react to someone doesn't make it ok. Intention is a personal thing. It isn't something we can know very well about others. Just ourselves. Which is all practice is about anyhow.

    CinorjerPJK
  • Steve_BSteve_B Far southwest corner of Indiana, USA Veteran

    Suppose someone cuts me off in traffic, and I respond by getting ahead of them and cutting them off. Something undesirable happened to me. But what matters is that I responded in an inappropriate, inflammatory, and dangerous way. Now suppose that the person in the other car is the mythical Enlightened Being. How does that make things different, or weightier? I would say that my aggressive action was exactly as inappropriate, inflammatory, and dangerous regardless of who inhabits the other vehicle. I don't think there is a weightiness coefficient that retrospectively re-scales my actions. And if I drive nicely but criticize, again I don't think it matters who is in the other car. To transplant a thought from another thread, the boat is always empty, isn't it?

    karasti
  • @NB1100 said:

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @NB1100 said:

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @Cinorjer said:
    I think you're just stumbling into the stream of Arahat worship that runs through the Sutras. We pay honor to our Teachers and Masters but that can bring some special problems with it over time. We still see that playing out today. One of them is viewing the people in authority as inherently special and not to be criticized or questioned. That can be reflected in the Sutras in places. So insulting a great enlightened Master brings special punishment? I won't criticize the Sutras but there is another type of Dharma also taught.

    I agree with this. On my own account I will add, that monastics and teachers can (will) also suffer from wrong view, ill will etc. Thus aforementioned monastic member might just be protecting what he sees as the authority of the monastics. The Buddha said, that one should not criticize in others that which they have not attained themselves. Some equate this with karma which will reap bad results.
    So the monk has both canonical and maybe even personal reasons for saying what he did.
    We will never know exactly how, when or why karma works. At the moment I am pretty confident, that karma does not lead to arbitrary results - e.i. criticize a holy person and fail at playing tennis. The negative outcome of such a criticism could be, that a firm believer in the critisized holy person does his to avenge the percieved insult. An unwholesome action, of course, but we are humans afterall.
    I think it can be of value to take into consideration, that monks are just people who are in an environment which is seen as most conducive to reaching higher levels of understanding of Buddhism and maybe even reach levels of enlightenment, but it is up to the individual monk to take the steps. Being a monk is not necessarily the same as being a better person, which the actions of some monks clearly demonstrate.

    I agree but as mentioned above, the criticism does not necessarily have to be through speech. Once you see and/or received obvious improper treatment, the mind will go "he shouldn't do such thing" or the like. This is too a criticism, right? I'm just wondering if this kind of criticism will bring grave or heavy result, considering the person we criticize is a noble one. But telling ourselves not to think certain thoughts seems to be an impossible task. Do we have choice except stop interacting or going to holy place?

    Unwholesome thoughts can lead or leads to unwholesome actions. That is the karmic effect of thoughts and - in my understanding - why thoughts should also be guarded and corrected. I do not buy into the esoteric stuff, where everything you do from stepping on an ant to thinking yours when someone is being a jackass (to put it bluntly), can be a deciding factor in a rebirth as a king or a beggar - literally or metaphorically so.

    The rule of karma says, that actions (including thoughts) have consequenses. Some are readily identifiable and immediate, others are difficult to see and can take long time to ripen - or might never. To think that this means, that any action (including thoughts) can have any consequence is not in line with the inherent logic of the rule of karma.
    If you have angry thoughts, you are more likely to act out - the angry (unwholesome) thoughts lead to unwholesome actions and thus a potentially bad karmic fruit.
    One angry thought will not do this, which is evident: we all have angry thoughts, and often enough at that, but we don't go around dodging falling trees, flying bullets and angry mobs all the time.
    Just like killing a fly will reap almost no negative karmic fruit, while killing a human being will reap a massive negative karmic fruit.
    An example: as a youngster I killed some rainworms. The other kids noticed and called me a "person cruel to animals" (one word in my language). My social status, and I, suffered because of the suffering I caused to the animals. Later I would suffer from a bad conscience, not sleeping at night. This eventually passed. That is karma in effect.
    A year later I was helping loading pigs unto a truck, when one of them turned suddenly and caused my thumb to sprain - some would explain this seemingly random accident with my killings of worms. Why, though? The rainworm killings had logical, obvious and explainable consequenses.
    So does the pig incident: I stressed pigs by guiding them into a truck. Pigs don't like to walk towards a dead end, so you have to gradually block the path with a wooden plate. Pig panics and runs into me. Bad karma, bad effect - but not necessarily obvious.

    What I'm really trying to say is, that you don't have to fear the reaper for even the most minor "transgressions". Karma is not a tombola.

    From my understanding, what you were saying was thought will not produce heavy karmic consequences. Reminds me of the dialogue between Buddha and Jain, Jain said only body action that can do (serious) harm not mind but Buddha said the opposite.
    I am not sure how to recall what is the name of the Sutta.

    Can we also say the effect of an action is obvious if it's done via body and speech but not the mind?

    If you sat at home all day, thinking unwholesome thoughts, what do you think would happen? My guess is: not a whole lot. You would suffer the consequenses of sitting home all day, but not much else.
    Imagine you did the same, but only had wholesome thoughts. Would good things come your way? Again, I don't think so. You would suffer the same consequenses of sitting home all day.

    The wholesome mind would be less stressed of course, but what we are discussing is whether it would change anything in the material world. Quite frankly, on that level both examples lead to the same results.

  • DhammaDragonDhammaDragon Carpe Diem Samsara Loop Veteran

    The quality of our thoughts colour the quality of our future actions, @Ficus_religiosa.

    Sitting at home all day indulging in wholesome/unwholesome thoughts develop proclivities and tendencies in us, and we'll tend to act out on them eventually.

    dhammachickPJK
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Veteran

    It doesn't manifest in that moment while you sit there "doing" nothing. But it does make a difference. Most days, I start with yoga, then meditation, and then writing. A part of my writing is focusing on a positive frame of mind, my inspirations, my focus for the day, etc. But there are days I wake up on the wrong side of the bed. Where I am riled up in my mind, crabby, negative, etc. And which focus is present has a direct impact on my day. Even though for an hour or so, they were just thoughts. It's rare a day that starts well goes horribly awry. Even if something bad happens, I can weather it much better. I can think other ways about people who annoy me and even smile their way. I can be patient with my kids. I can maintain myself much better. On days I start off in a negative head space, the opposite happens. I don't go out and kill people but I snap at my kids, yell at the dog, roll my eyes at people who are being slow, etc. So it does have a direct impact, and not only on my mind. Because when I have a good day, so do others who interact with me. And when I don't? Neither do they. Generally speaking of course. And it all starts with how my mind is to start the day and what thoughts/seeds I choose water.

    Cinorjerlobster
  • @NB1100 said:

    If, for example, one sees someone does something wrong, then his mind goes "it's not proper for him to speak and do such and such thing". And that person happened to be someone who has attained a level of enlightenment. Does this criticism make our kamma somehow weightier? Thanks.

    Yes. It does.
    This makes it very difficult for those basking in samsara and why kindness and compassion for all is the safe refuge.

    Those who have attained a degree of realised integration, where inner and outer have harmonised will be both effective and exemplary. These are the arahats.

    My teacher was neither an arahat or samyaksambuddha but something different ...
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pratyekabuddha

    Pratyekabuddha are operating openly but also with secret nobility, in ways that are never unkind but can be challenging. To answer your question, you can not oppose them because they work within your opposition but you may create difficulties because you have yet to understand the deeper motivation which is long term well being ...

  • Ficus_religiosaFicus_religiosa Veteran
    edited November 2016

    @DhammaDragon said:
    The quality of our thoughts colour the quality of our future actions, @Ficus_religiosa.

    Sitting at home all day indulging in wholesome/unwholesome thoughts develop proclivities and tendencies in us, and we'll tend to act out on them eventually.

    I agree, cfr. my post above :) what I do not agree with is, that thoughts alone create karma directly

  • DhammaDragonDhammaDragon Carpe Diem Samsara Loop Veteran

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @DhammaDragon said:
    The quality of our thoughts colour the quality of our future actions, @Ficus_religiosa.

    Sitting at home all day indulging in wholesome/unwholesome thoughts develop proclivities and tendencies in us, and we'll tend to act out on them eventually.

    I agree, cfr. my post above :) what I do not agree with is, that thoughts alone create karma directly

    I don't either.
    But the quality of the thoughts you entertain the most, will definitely colour the reality that you'll create for yourself, the actions you are most likely to indulge in later.

  • PJKPJK UK Explorer

    @DhammaDragon said:

    @Ficus_religiosa said:

    @DhammaDragon said:
    The quality of our thoughts colour the quality of our future actions, @Ficus_religiosa.

    Sitting at home all day indulging in wholesome/unwholesome thoughts develop proclivities and tendencies in us, and we'll tend to act out on them eventually.

    I agree, cfr. my post above :) what I do not agree with is, that thoughts alone create karma directly

    I don't either.
    But the quality of the thoughts you entertain the most, will definitely colour the reality that you'll create for yourself, the actions you are most likely to indulge in later.

    Yes @DhammaDragon Eckhart tolle said that anything and everything clings to life even a momentary thought does not want to die negative thoughts create a groove like that on a record, that make it easier for you to return to.

    lobsterDhammaDragon
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